Waving Goodbye Through a Window


Madalyn Johnson, Writer

Ben Platt, the Tony Award winning star of Broadway’s Dear Evan Hansen, is set to leave the show, with his final performance set for November 19. The 23-year-old actor announced the news on Twitter in August, expressing to his fans and the cast of Dear Evan Hansen his love and gratitude. “2 readings, 2 workshops, 3 productions and almost 4 years. Hard to fathom that’s it’s nearly time to say goodbye to Evan and my DEH family,” Platt tweeted at the time.

The announcement of Platt’s departure is heartbreaking to many Broadway fans. Ever since the show’s premiere, Dear Evan Hansen has been a tear jerker and a hit for audiences, winning big at the Tony Awards with six wins, including Best Musical, and nine nominations.

The story of Dear Evan Hansen centers around a high school student, Evan Hansen, who struggles with social anxiety, a divorced family household, finances with college, and to top it off, a broken arm. When a fellow student, Connor Murphy, commits suicide, Evan is mistaken for the best friend of the deceased student and decides to create the Conor Murphy project to keep his memory alive. Evan instantly gains online fame and goes from being an absolute nobody to the center of attention. As the story progresses, Evan has a hard time keeping his secret, especially in front of his crush, Zoe Murphy, who ironically is Conor’s sister.

Along with the show’s deep, yet relatable, message about teen suicide, the musical has an amazing and Tony award-winning score written by composers Justin Paul and Benj Pasek who also wrote the Academy Award winning song “City of Stars” from the critically acclaimed La La Land.

As September comes to a close, more and more teens are eager to see Platt perform in Evan’s iconic blue striped shirt and arm cast one last time. Ticket sales have skyrocketed, leaving the musical to top box-office charts at the Music Box Theater. The show had already been a sellout ever since February when the musical made $1.127 million in ticket sales, according to The Washington Post.

Despite the disappointment many fans feel about Platt’s departure, the show’s legacy will continue to live on and will do so by touching audiences, while also informing them about the effects of teen suicide. Two actors are already lined up to replace Platt in his title role, The Real O’Neals star Noah Galvin will start November 21th, and Hello Dolly’s Taylor Trensch will hit the stage mid-January. Though the leader actor will be different, the touching message will remain the same for all fans to enjoy.